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Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Beacon Bits - Knitters Can Be Loopy

Knitters are becoming more plentiful and omnipresent. And it is always great to see a new perspective on an old craft. It was great to finally get into the new local store, Loopy Mango: Made for Making, with its own very special twist on merino yarn. Designed and manufactured by the owners of the store, they have a unique angle on a market that is always welcoming to working with fibers that lend themselves to projects that are distinct, durable and eye-catching.



My visit was short but long enough to take in the various hues and weights of the yarn. I will be returning to get my hands on some of the yarn to make yet another baby blanket once I know the gender of the baby with a summer delivery date. And I will certainly keep a look out for the class schedule on their website. I would definitely predict the store will be a fixture on Main Street for years to come despite yarns stores in the Hudson Valley coming and going (e.g., Out of the Loop in Hopewell Junction is slated to close; one in Cold Spring planning to open when a building renovation takes place after years of a hiatus since the popular Knittingsmith closed about 8 years ago.) The yarns offered at Loopy Mango are not competitive with those offered at Beetle and Fred (e.g., Brooklyn Tweed) on the other side of Main Street. It's nice to know Beacon is big enough for two stores with great yarns for local knitters!

Food for thought: As a maker (long before we called ourselves that) and a community participant, it makes me happy to announce that the "Knit Us As One" group will meet again for the third year as a registered participant in the World Wide Knit in Public Day, to be held on Saturday, June 9th from 2pm-6pm at St. Andrew's Episcopal Church. This year's theme will be 'yarn bombing' and we may plan a visit to the group that gathers on the corner of Main Street and Route 9D every Saturday afternoon to have some fun as we knit an item or two to 'resist'. Plan on joining us. You will be able to find information on the WWKIP website. 


Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Beacon Bits - Raising Funds and Lifting Up the Community

In the last two months, I attended two fundraisers in Beacon to add to the multiple events I have attended in the past seven years, including dinners and dances for the Beacon Sloop Club and its refurbished Woodie Guthrie, auctions for Common Ground Farm and its green initiatives, a folk rally and beer tasting for the restoration of the Beacon Theater before it was relegated to become apartments, and the Howland Public Library friend-raiser. What marked the last two events was the size of the crowd of attendees and the spirit of those present to support the cause and meet and greet neighbors and friends, old and new. 

In December, More Good led the way with an organized gala at the Hudson Valley Brewery to raise money to provide wells for water through generosity.org for those who cannot take it for granted. Founder and owner Jason Schuler is a dedicated social entrepreneur who has the right formula for growing his business in an enlightened manner and his good karma is paying off in so many ways. It was a perfect way to celebrate the holiday season!
In January, Beacon Arts supported a Roaring 20's event at the Dennings Point Distillery to raise money for Beacon Open Studios. Who knew that the local distilleries would garner attention from those who may not turn out to have a glass of beer or bourbon drink, but still know how to raise a glass and have a dance or two with friends or family. Charleston or not, it was a great evening event that was staged to the nines for the historical theme with fitting garb and costumes, excellent music, and special drinks in a speak-easy ambience. It was a treat to join in and help  to create the scene!
Food for thought: Raising funds for nonprofits will become more necessary as funding for the arts and the environment are reduced by spending cuts and philanthropic slow downs. It is also an essential way for building community awareness and support for the local issues that may also have global impact. If every organization in Beacon that represents the interests of artists, musicians, foodies, and conservationists could sponsor one fundraiser per year, the calendar year would be filled with weekly events to choose from as we move through the seasons. It's another way to put Beacon on the map with unique style and it is a wonderful way to keep connecting newcomers to old-timers in order to continue to build a grateful, altruistic and sharing community.




Support the Dutchess Junction Fire Station's annual dinner on Saturday, Feburary 17th, 4-8pm
located at 75 Slocum Road on Route 9D, Beacon NY!!




Sunday, February 4, 2018

Beacon Bits - Stop Walking in Circles -- Choose the Labyrinth

SOUND/PEACE
Seeking Harmony in Dissonant Times

An immersive sonic experience accompanied by the changing light of the setting sun.

Featuring a Labyrinth for walking meditation.

Sound/Peace (Seeking Harmony in Dissonant Times) will take place at 4:00 on Saturday, February 10 at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Beacon, New York.

This performance features a combination of electronic and acoustic instruments and aims to create a serene, contemplative atmosphere for deep listening where one can decompress and relax. This event also features a 36 Foot canvas labyrinth where audience members can explore a walking meditation. Pillows and mats are welcome and encouraged.

The performance will take place over approximately two hours as the sun sets. The space will be illuminated by natural light and the performance will end as darkness falls. 


Musicians:
Craig Chin: Guitar and Loops
Andy Rinehart: Accordion and Piano

Location:
St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church
15 South Ave
Beacon, NY 12508

Performance Time:
4:00PM 
Saturday, February 10, 2018

A simple reception with refreshments to follow.

Food for thought: Walking the labyrinth is a deepening and soulful experience, which can only be enhanced with the soundscape and errant music created by Craig Chin and Andy Rinehart. Craig Chin graced the church during  the initial walking meditation using the labyrinth last year. Join the community in this unique and spiritual practice and come into the sanctuary to pray, meditate, reflect, hope, keep the faith, and otherwise hold up thoughts of finding peace in these challenging times. It is intended for those who find themselves needing to travel with others who want to stay the course and walk the path of justice, freedom and peace. 


Sunday, December 3, 2017

Beacon Bits -- Advent Music to Anticipate the Season of Joy

While I am re-grouping to continue to reflect on the community that has been changing, growing, emerging and becoming Beacon, I invite you all to attend the 3rd Annual Advent Concert to herald the season of joy!! The festivities for the tree lighting begin at 4pm at the Visitors Center, so just stop by for part or all of the concert, which begins at 5pm. Thanks :)



A Little Advent Music

A Song Recital by

Br. Josép Martínez-Cubero, OHC- tenor

and

Maximillian Esmus- pianist

with The Rev. John Williams, bass-baritone

Performing
music by R. Walters, C. Saint Saens, R. Vaughan-Williams, B. Britten, M. Ravel, C. Courtney, D. Besig,
 A. Guettel, R. Hayes, H. Johnson, and M. Bonds
 
December 9, 2017
5:00pm
Free Admission
Reception to Follow



St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church
15 South Avenue
Beacon NY 12508
One block south of Bank Square and Beacon Visitor’s Center.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Pied Piper, Anyone?

“Young Person’s Guide to the Organ” – Pipes, Pedals, and Piano (with snacks to follow) on Sunday afternoon, September 17 at 1:30 PM at St. Andrews, Beacon. If you know of a young person – fourth grade and up – who already has some piano background, please let them know about this. They need to contact Susan LaGrande by emailing her at susanel2@optonline.net to register for this event.

Monday, August 7, 2017

Beacon Bits -- Still Going Strong

It is the mid-way point of summer and there is still time to walk the streets to take in the art along the way during the annual public art display known as Beacon 3D. Beacon 3D is a personal favorite and an event that I have supported in different ways over the last few years. Started in 2013 by artist and gallery owner, Eleni Smolen, it has been recognized by the community as progressive, meaningful, and recognized as an award winning project. 

This year, I'd like to take the opportunity to highlight my two favorite sculptures in front of my favorite architectural gem in Beacon, the Howland Cultural Center: Hedge 1, 2017 sculpture in stainless steel nails, Insun Kim, artist (top) and Columbina, 2013 reinforced concrete, Sarah Haviland, artist (bottom.)



Both hard, cold, strong, feminine, and fantastic! The juxtaposition of the two unique creations is visually stunning. One draws you in to discover the other. One appears to be rejecting and off-putting, the other inviting and huggable. Standing and taking in the visual field, I met some new Beaconites, a family of four who moved up from Brooklyn :) and while we spoke about Beacon 3D and ways to connect to other families in the community, a sparrow flew into the tree, unafraid and not threatened by the barbs and unnatural branches. It sat in the tree chirping despite our proximity and I fumbled and could not get a photo of it at the right angle, and I paused for a moment, which was long enough to realize that was all I had to do. The bird, the art, the chance meeting, the moment, the breath. It was all right there. And that is all that was needed.

Food for Thought: Art in public spaces is not about decoration or marketing or visibility. It is about that moment of connection within the space that the art creates to invite you to be a part of it, unabashedly, wholeheartedly, one encounter after the next. Thank you ,Insun! Thank you, Sarah! And many thanks, Eleni, for each and every moment!

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Beacon Bits -- A Hand Full of Art


Calligraphy Exhibit

Second Saturday, July 8, 2017

3-6pm*

*4pm-brief class/demonstration

St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, 15 South Ave, Beacon NY



Br. Roy Parker’s Craft



Calligraphy is a hobby and vocation for Br. Roy Parker, OHC, who lives at the Holy Cross Monastery in West Park, NY. This exhibition will capture his spirit and his art. Br. Roy will also give a demonstration and brief class at 4pm; materials will be provided for those who would like to follow along with the demonstration and practice the lettering.

Roy’s Calligraphic Journey

Br. Roy first became interested in calligraphy when he encountered the book “Sweet Roman Hand,” (ed. Wilfrid Blunt, 1952), Shakespeare’s term for Italic handwriting in “Twelfth Night. In 1980, he studied with Beva Farmer in Monterey, CA and became part of the lineage of master calligrapher Lloyd Reynolds with whom she had apprenticed. In the last 30+ years, he also studied with of Peter Thornton, Thomas Ingmar and master calligrapher, Reggie Ezell. Br. Roy has also had students of his own and taught workshops.



This joy of sharing his craft has led him to execute an extensive variety of calligraphic pieces in the form of commissions for those attracted to his work. Br. Roy is motivated by engaging with creative beauty, the pleasure of creation, and acknowledges the legacy of his creative acts. Calligraphy has also been a practice of developing patience and self-knowledge.



Br. Roy’s entire print repertoire, which are art quality giclée prints, are available from The Monk’s Cell Gift and Book Shop. Br. Roy also creates original calligraphy under commission.  Contact him to explore possibilities. To see examples of Br. Roy’s work or to order prints or cards of his calligraphy, visit the ‘monkscell’ Etsy Storefront.